Chandigarh: I-League side Minerva Punjab FC have withdrawn from the upcoming Hero Super Cup 2019 tournament citing the unfair treatment dished out to the I-League teams.
Minerva’s withdrawal is in unison win the united withdrawal of all I-league clubs (barring Shillong Lajong, Churchill Brothers, Real Kashmir, and Indian Arrows) from the Super cup due to reasons mentioned in identical letters sent by all clubs to All India Football Federation (AIFF) general secretary, Kushal Das today.
The clubs pointed out that the I-League clubs are being neglected by all aspects by the country’s football federation. Eight I-League clubs had written a letter to the AIFF in February this year regarding multiple concerns such as the future of the I-League but they are yet to hear back from the country’s football federation. The clubs also highlighted how the AIFF has not provided any financial assistance to the participating teams despite having a title sponsor for the event. With no AFC competitions also on offer, the clubs felt the competition lacked any incentive.
The Hero Cup is a knockout tournament hosted by the AIFF where I-League teams lock horns against the Indian Super League teams. It is India’s main club knockout tournament and Minerva was scheduled to play the qualifying round against FC Pune City on the 15th of March. The clubs will now wait for a response from the AIFF before taking a decision.